British army sets up social media ‘brigade’

The 77 Brigade will be based in Hermitage, Berkshire and will be formally created in April. (File photo: AFP)

The British military plans on setting up special unit dedicated to fighting wars “in the information age” on social media using psychological tactics, the BBC reported on Saturday.

The 77 Brigade will be based in Hermitage, Berkshire and will be formally created in April, Head of the Army General Sir Nick Carter said.

The unit, made up of reservists and regular troops, will “play a key part in enabling the UK to fight in the information age.”

It “consists of more than just traditional capabilities,” Carter added.

“It recognizes that the actions of others in a modern battlefield can be affected in ways that are not necessarily violent and it draws heavily on important lessons from our commitments to operations in Afghanistan amongst others.”

While the 77 Brigade will consist of members of the Royal Navy and RAF and the Army, it will seek “new ways of allowing civilians with bespoke skills to serve alongside their military counterparts.”

“Civilians with the right skills will work alongside regular troops and reservists and could be sent anywhere in the world to help win hearts and minds,” the BBC’s defense correspondent Jonathan Beale explained.

“They will try to influence local populations and change behavior through what the Army calls traditional and unconventional means.”

By establishing the unit, the Army recognizes that non-violent factors now have an impact in modern warfare, a lesson the British Army learned in Afghanistan and other involvements, the spokesman said.

“It recognizes that the actions of others in a modern battlefield can be affected in ways that are not necessarily violent and it draws heavily on important lessons from our commitments to operations in Afghanistan amongst others.”

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Last Update: Wednesday, 20 May 2020 KSA 09:44 - GMT 06:44
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